Palestine – “In The Land of My Birth: A Palestinian Boyhood”, a new book by Reja-e Busailah

3501 M Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20007

“With simple honesty and warm curiosity, a blind boy paints a richly textured portrait of daily life in Palestine before the Nakba. Memory is the elixir of the Palestinian condition, and Busailah’s account of his childhood—from the House for Orphans to the forced march out of Lydda—is remarkably informative, moving, and riveting. A joy to read, it transports us into a world that remains tragically distant to most Palestinians today.” ~Beshara Doumani, Distinguished Professor of Modern Middle East History; Director, Middle East Studies, Brown University.

 

ABOUT THE BOOK
In The Land of My Birth recounts the coming of age of a blind Palestinian boy of modest milieu during the turbulent years leading up to the fall of Palestine in 1948. Above all, it is the boy’s life—his struggles to make his way in the sighted world, his upbringing, schooling, friendships, and adventures. It is a compelling human story with a mine of information on popular culture and customs, the educational system, and Palestinian life. While the looming conflict forms the essential backdrop, it comes to the fore only when it impinges directly on the boy’s world. The fact that the memoir unfolds largely in “real time,” with events, conversations, and situations recounted not retrospectively but as they are experienced, provides a rare window on the political attitudes, social views, legends, prejudices, perceptions and misperceptions of ordinary Palestinians at the time, unmediated and unvarnished. Essential reading for anyone interested in the cultural, social, and political history of Palestine, the condition of blindness, and the education of the blind.

About the Author

Born in Jerusalem in 1929, Reja-e Busailah completed his secondary education in Palestine before earning a BA in English literature from Cairo University and a PhD in the same field from New York University. He taught that subject for thirty years at Indiana University (Kokomo), with visiting professorships at Birzeit University (West Bank) and Muḥammad V University (Morocco). Earlier, with an MA in special education from Hunter College, he taught at a school for the blind in Kuwait which he helped establish. In 1967 he founded Project Loving Care, dedicated to helping Palestinian children, which he directed until 1991. Dr Busailah’s passion is poetry, and a number of his poems have been published in various literary journals.

Product details

Publisher: Institute for Palestine Studies.

ISBN: 978-0-88728-0009

Edition: First

Publication Date: 2017

Language: English

The Institute for Palestine Studies (USA), Inc. is a 501(c)(3) public charity. The Institute is dedicated to providing reliable resources and publications on Palestinian affairs and the Arab-Israeli conflict.

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